The Depression hit the country hard, and go worse as time went on, yet you would not be able to tell from just looking outside. Unemployed men and their families would not just find some place on the street to live; there were certain places designated for them. For example, on the edge of town, people would be huddling around a bonfire or a municipal incinerator just to keep warm, or even scrounging around dumpsters looking for food. No one but those experiencing it could explain what it felt like to live in poverty. Most of the agony of the people was hidden. People would have to sell their houses, move into little apartments or basements, and do odd jobs for the landlords in return for a room for the night. These people were distinguished as the "deserving poor" rather than as the people who did not want to work for their food. If there had only been a few of these "deserving poor," then charity services would have taken care of them; but the numbers were too large. In December of 1929, 3 million people were unemployed; by 1932, 8 million people were out of work. Many people who had jobs took care of the poor in any ways they could; convents made sandwiches for these people and set them outside of their doors where people did not have to knock and ask for food. President Hoover led a charity campaign to urge people to give to the less fortunate. Kentucky coal miners suffered the most; whole towns in Harlan County had no income at all. They lived on wild berries and dandelions. Hoover went to a service committee where they developed a concern for the miners; Hoover gave them $2,500 out of his own money, but most contributions came from the Rockefellers. .
As I read this article, tears slowly came to my eyes. I do not know what it was like to live during the Depression; this article helped me to learn how blessed I am to be living the life I am today. You think you know what it is like not to have money when u can't buy that new shirt; we have absolutely no idea.